Youth Smoking And Prevention Essay

3864 words - 15 pages

Youth Smoking and Prevention

Introduction: Ascertaining the Issue and Addressing the Problem

As we progress into a more sophisticated and knowledgeable future, it is no wonder that our prosperity and health are first on our list of priorities. By simply looking at the longevity people have in today's world, one can see something that was unfathomable less than one hundred years ago. In this proposal, an issue is addressed that deals on many levels. It is an issue that touches everyone, whether one is directly involved or not. It is an issue that lives in every community around the world and affects more people than most realize. So as we advance into an increasingly foreseeable future, where our standard of success rises higher and higher toward perfection, it is ironic how we allow such an issue slip past our view and remain forever in our periphery.

It is this, the issue of smoking, which has stood the test of time and has raised all of these concerns. The importance of addressing this blemish on society's face is something that can no longer be ignored. The purpose of this proposal is to effectively state a solution to the problems of youth smoking and illegal sale of tobacco, issues that have been pushed aside in the minds of so many for too long.

Background Information: Linking the Past With the Present

Cigarette smoking is ubiquitous. It seems today that everywhere we turn we see media channeling or promoting their attention on smoking. How this effects society in America and others around the world is substantial. Over recent years, prominence of smoking has been seen to be on the upswing and this in effect not only influences adult smokers, but youths as well. However, the issue of youth smoking is not something new. There have been many ways in which the problem of underage smoking has been addressed, such as governmental legislation and undercover surveillance, but often times, these methods are overlooked and not enforced.

To provide a picture of the magnitude of the problem, it was estimated that underage smokers consumed 924 million packs of cigarettes in 1998 (U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services, 188). A number as large as this will be certain to raise eyebrows, but as we have seen from the past, most times it does not. A prime example of the ignorance shown toward smoking is given by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention who state that over 2 million deaths in the 5-year period from 1995 through 1999 were attributable to cigarette smoking (Heinrich 1). This total lack of adherence is shocking.

But first, to begin to assess and fully understand what we are dealing with, knowledge of tobacco and how exactly it became so popular is necessary to achieve a meaningful solution and ultimately effective proposal.

Tobacco: A Self Portrait
Exactly how tobacco gained so much influence and popularity is uncertain. There was never a single moment in time when everyone all at once decided...

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